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Effectiveness of strategies designed to reduce disparities

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Introduction

Evaluate the effectiveness of strategies designed to reduce disparities Disparities can be referred to differences, bias and unequal in gender, jobs, wealth, or contrast between rich and poor. Scales of disparities can be classified into regional, national or global. In recent years, inequalities in wealth and economic growth have increased both between and within countries - from one area to another and among different groups of people. However, various ways to reduce disparities are introduced in different countries, consisting of government investment on social development, foreign investment that mainly focuses on economic integration, different kinds of aid, structural adjustment policies and easier access to markets. Papua New Guinea is an example to demonstrate how government aid and foreign investment have reduced disparities. It is the eastern half of the island of New Guinea, which situated to the north of Australia. Before European colonization, most people earned a living by small-scale subsistence farming. However, when machinery was developed in 1850s, the indigenous technology for producing the oil was made redundant and eventually led to village producers working on plantations established by the Europeans. After the World War II, Australian aid led to the growth of an extremely large government sector of employment, stimulating a rapid increase in the rate of urbanization. Manufacturing industries expanded, although they remained a small sector in Papua New Guinea's economy. ...read more.

Middle

The emphasis is on the involvement of local people. The projects aim to make small but significant improvements in people's quality of life. This involves local people work to improve roads, repair public buildings and dig wells. The technology used is simple, and the skills needed are those which the people already have. Education is also an important part of the Ghanaian aid programme. It aims to provide basic literacy for 15,000 people. Foreign aid provides educational experts and local training for reaching staffs as well as vehicles, materials and equipment. However, some aid projects have been criticised that they are inappropriate to local needs. They are generally considered as tied aid, whereby the donor provides the aid on the condition that the receiver uses the donor's raw materials. One example is the Pergau Dam in Malaysia, which is the most costly aid project ever funded by the British government. � 234 million of British aid money was spent on the dam in Kelantan in northern Malaysia. It has been controversial due to three main reasons. Firstly, the electricity produced will not benefit the poorest Malaysians but the booming capital city Kuala Lumper. Secondly, the fact that it is a tied aid allowed the British government to secure a huge arms contract to supply military aircraft to Malaysia, which would provide jobs and exports for the UK. ...read more.

Conclusion

Moreover, disparities can be reduced through the integration of regional of national economies, meaning the free flow of people, goods and capital between nations. This is dominated by the integrated global production systems of TNCs, global markets and global finance. International organizations such as the IMF, World Bank and World Trade Organization (WTO) contribute to the integration of economies by encouraging the liberalization of trade and the free movement of capital. The process of integration has also been facilitated by development of trading blocs, international trade agreements and the technological improvement in transport and communications. To conclude, strategies such as government and foreign investment, different types of aid including the 'top down' and the 'bottom up' approaches, structural adjustment policies, as well as free trade and easier access to markets are considered useful and effective ways to reduce disparities. They have provided employment opportunities, improved technology and business expertise, infrastructure development, financial support and local economic growth. However, considerable regional variations in development also exist between or within countries no matter how wealthy the country is. It is apparent that not every one in each country has benefited. Particularly for people in remote rural areas, development efforts need to be geared towards alleviating poverty throughout the whole country. More attention needs to be focused on the provision of better sanitation systems and also the improvements of general infrastructure, which can further enhance the quality of life in the country. ...read more.

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